US basketball

OKC names Daigneault head coach

Agence France-Presse

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OKC names Daigneault head coach

NEW HEAD COACH. Mark Daigneault assumes the head coach position after 6 years with the Thunder.

Screenshot from OKC Twitter

Mark Daigneault succeeds Billy Donovan as head coach of the Thunder

The Oklahoma City Thunder promoted assistant Mark Daigneault to head coach, succeeding Billy Donovan who departed in September after the team’s playoff exit.

Daigneault has risen to the position after 6 years with the club that included a head coaching assignment with Oklahoma City’s developmental G-League team.

The 35-year-old takes the helm with less than 3 weeks to go before training camp opens on December 1, with the 2020-21 season due to tip off on December 22.

Daigneault, who was an assistant to Donovan last year, will be tasked with getting the Thunder back into the post-season, something Donovan did in each of his 5 seasons.

But after the Thunder were ousted in the first round of the 2020 playoffs, he departed and was later hired as head coach of the Chicago Bulls.

“We are thrilled to have Mark assume the role of head coach of the Oklahoma City Thunder,” Thunder executive vice president and general manager Sam Presti said in a statement.

“He has been a selfless and effective leader within our organization since his arrival in 2014. Mark is a values based leader, continuous learner, and someone that will help us continue the repositioning of our organization on and off the court.

“The amount of head coaching experience and diverse experiences through his tenure with the Blue is rare for someone his age.” –

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